Nashville Post Mortem: Callie Khouri Talks Juliette's Big Q, Teddy's Scandal and the Tour

MICHIEL HUISMAN, CONNIE BRITTON, DAVID ALFORDIf you’ve yet to watch this week’s midseason finale of Nashville, avert your eyes. Everyone else, you may proceed…

Wednesday’s Nashville winter finale featured a long-awaited kiss, an out-of-the-blue proposal and a dodgy confession – but all of it paled in comparison to the best news: We’re an important step closer to a Rayna-Juliette tour, y’all! Here, creator and executive producer Callie Khouri talks with TVLine about the escalating drama and what’s ahead when the ABC series returns in the new year.

RELATED | Nashville‘s Kimberly Williams-Paisley on Track to Become a Series Regular

TVLINE | Let’s start at the end, with Juliette’s end-of-episode proposal to Sean.
You know what? This girl will really stop at nothing to get her way. She will not be denied. [Sean’s] mom should have known. You say you’re not going to be with my son? Oh yes, she is!

TVLINE | Juliette wants family, she wants connection, she wants to be taken care of – even though she likes to say she can take care of herself.

TVLINE | So do you think Sean’s mother’s comments gave her the idea of proposing to Sean, or do you think it was something that was germinating beforehand?
I think that was the tipping point for her. She’s desperately in search of some kind of security… I think it’s probably the first time she’s experienced being with somebody who just wants to be with her for herself. As sad as that is, it’s incredibly compelling for her. And seeing his family and thinking she could be a part of that…

TVLINE | Let’s move on to Rayna and Teddy. The skeptic in me, who doesn’t trust Teddy, thinks that Peggy’s suicide attempt implies that there’s more going on than he’s saying. Is there?
You know, I can’t really say. [Laughs] Teddy’s a troubled fellow who’s had a really serious and bad run of luck for several years now. I think that makes you do things sometimes that you wouldn’t do otherwise. That’s certainly the situation he found himself in with this financial situation that he was in. He’s made sure his life stayed complicated, let me put it like that.

TVLINE | I liked when he said, “I did this for our family,” and Rayna said, “No, you did this for yourself.” It spoke to him always being in her shadow and wanting some attention. Is that a dynamic we’re going to see play out even more as the story progresses?
Yeah. Part of his problem is he, somewhere along the way, started to feel just useless. I think it’s a really difficult place for a guy to be. I think it’s made him not unethical, but he’s made some bad decisions.

KIMBERLY WILLIAMS-PAISLEY, ERIC CLOSETVLINE | What can you tell us about Peggy? She’s in a pretty bad way as of this episode.
Peggy also has managed to make some really ill-advised decisions. Things like that, they don’t just disappear.

TVLINE | Rayna appears to have made up her mind to support Teddy for their daughters’ sake. Can you tease anything happening that might change her mind about that decision?
She is dedicated to her family. She’s in a terrible position, because she’s in a similar situation as Juliette in that family is so important to her — and yet there’s so much wrong with it. From her own conflict about going through most of her marriage in love with a guy she can’t be with, it’s just a very difficult situation for her. I think she feels a tremendous amount of guilt, and that causes things to not go as smoothly as they should.

TVLINE | There’s that great fight in the pilot where Lamar alludes to the fact that Teddy may not be the father of Rayna’s older daughter. When will he find out more about that?
Well, soon. It’s — like all these family situations — more complicated than I can tell you. Soon these things will start to be revealed.

TVLINE | I liked how, like in real life, it’s one of these “secrets” that everyone knows about but that only get pulled out in an argument when someone wants to go in for the kill.
It’s terribly bad manners. [Laughs] It’s like, “I thought we all agreed that nobody was ever going to say anything about that.” Nobody did ever agree to that, but it’s totally ill-mannered of Lamar to bring that up.

TVLINE | Will we see the mayoral race play out by the end of this season?

TVLINE | Let’s move on to Scarlett and Gunnar. Can you talk a little bit about Scarlett’s emotional state after that kiss and what’s ahead for her?
She’s kind of running out of patience with Avery, obviously. But Scarlett is actually really enjoying the fact that she’s got talent. This [songwriting] thing just landed in her lap, and when you find out you can do something like that, I think she’s starting to feel stronger. She’s wanting to find herself right now and not be [trading] one relationship for another. She’s still got really strong feelings for Avery. I think she always will. They broke up a long time ago before they even moved to Nashville, and I think she was in the depths of misery for that whole time.

TVLINE | Let’s talk about the tour. Rayna seemed much more receptive than ever before. How much of that is because of what happened in the last episode? Is she listening to Deacon’s advice about Juliette and thinking, “There might be something here…”
Rayna is really like, “God this thing has gotta happen.” She does not want her career to look like it’s faltering. And the fact that she’s got a hit, which will continue to do well, makes her really want to capitalize on it. So she decides that it’s smart to be proactive. She wants to take control of her career. This is an opportunity, and she’s not going to be an idiot about it.

TVLINE | I’m assuming Deacon’s tour plans will somehow work out with hers?
Nope… Things are complicated for Deacon. They don’t magically work out with Rayna.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. onlyakb says:

    loved the episode, can’t wait for January episodes!!

  2. Robin says:

    In tonight’s episode all the music seemed really good! I was more impressed with the music overall tonight than I’ve been the whole season. Can’t wait for new episodes…though I totally saw the proposal coming with those previews/teasers…

  3. Rachel says:

    loving Scarlett’s journey so far! ~i definitely think she needs to find herself since she’s always been so dependent on Avery… but once she gets there, I hope she realized that Gunnar is the real person she should be with <3 love them!
    And really hope we get Rayna & Deacon time in the second half of the season.. despite them being on opposite tours…

  4. ABC says:

    Juliette and Faux Tim Tebow will not end well. Shame.

  5. Amy says:

    I know Peggy’s character has been made a regular but I wish she wouldn’t make it out of the hospital. She serves no purpose. Teddy feels useless? Well so far he is. I love the idea of Rayna and Juliette going out on tour together when they both don’t want to. Fireworks ahead.

  6. sarah says:

    Rayna and Deacon will end up together at the end of the series, her and Deacon would still be together if he had not been an addict.
    I think Scarlett and Gunnar will end up together as well.
    I think Sean will say yes to Juliette’s proposal and I think Sean is good for her, he likes her for who she is and does not want to use her for her fame and he is hot! She knew she had a good one when she started dating him and that is why she stayed with him eventhough it was just supposed to be a ploy to restore her image there was something there that made her stay with him.

  7. Diane says:

    I sincerely hope that Rayna and Deacon are together. I also feel that way about Gunnar and Scarlett. And I really don’t want Juliette to break Fauxbow’s heart. Need to walk all the way down that aisle. He’s good for her.

  8. Jason Mann says:

    Great show I could tell from when Juliet first met Sean’s parents things with his mom were going to get politely ugly for the end of the hour. Rayna finally realized her sister did not have her back which must really hurt that her sister chose their father and the campaign over telling Ray the truth. It was good though that we got a good Deacon- Rayna scene in before the break they had more chemistry in that one scene than Rayna an Teddy have had all season. Can’t wait for January

  9. Drop Avery, & give Deacon a solo career without any females!!!

  10. Melissa says:

    I hope we get more scenes between Rayna and her sister. I feel there’s a whole lot more under the surface there. I know it’s not popular to root for Teddy, but I love Eric Close and if he says there was no affair with Peggy then I believe him! (Come on, it’s Martin Fitzgerald! He can’t lie!!) And I’m starting to really like Juliette – girl just wants to feel loved. Hayden P. has been a revelation. Great episode and great show!

    • Jo says:

      Agreed, I’m not liking the whole Rayna and Deacon thing. Rayan actually annoys me! I don’t think they’re good together, too much boring drama between them and I hope she won’t cheat on her husband, whom she has kids with. That’s just wrong!

  11. Angel says:

    It must be so hard to live with a man so many years and loving and working with the love of your life everyday… Poor Rayna.
    But I’m assuming that Lamar had something to do with Deacon and Rayna not being together, especially if she was pregnant with Deacon… About that, when Deacon will learn he has a daughter, I don’t even imagine how mad he’ll be as well as Maddie (because she’s old enough to be pissed)

  12. ifilus says:

    As a Nashville songwriter, the first thing I’d want to know when told there is a (first) ‘hold’ put on one of my songs is: “WHO?” I found it ridiculous that Scarlett and Gunnar never even asked their publisher.